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Mike Brown says Marvin Lewis, Katie Blackburn now run the team

Marvin Lewis AP

Bengals owner Mike Brown, the son of team founder Paul Brown, has been so heavily involved in running the team that Mike Brown paid himself a $1 million General Manager bonus from 1991 through at least 2009. In the future, any such bonus could be going to someone else.

Brown tells Joe Danneman of FOX 19 that Brown no longer runs the show.

“They’re doing it now,” Brown said of his daughter, Katie Blackburn, and coach Marvin Lewis. “The ball’s been essentially handed off.”

Lewis told Danneman that Brown remains heavily involved, with Brown at the team facility “seven days a week.”

Even if Brown has handed off the ball, he deserves some of the praise for the team’s three consecutive playoff appearances. On that point, Brown opted for humility and self-deprecation.

“Do I take credit for that?” Brown said of the team’s success. “I wasn’t out there taking credit when it wasn’t going well, so maybe I ought to shut up and not take credit when it’s gone a little better.”

Even though things have improved, the Bengals still haven’t won a playoff game since the week before the January 1991 loss to the Raiders in a game far better known for a career-ending hip injury to one of the best running backs the game briefly saw.  This year, the Bengals hope to finally shed what very well could be the curse of Bo Jackson.

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39 Responses to “Mike Brown says Marvin Lewis, Katie Blackburn now run the team”
  1. drfeelyouup says: Jul 23, 2014 7:14 AM

    Ah the Bungles. Thanks for being the Browns doormat.

  2. flash1287 says: Jul 23, 2014 7:15 AM

    As if they didn’t already suck enough!

  3. abanig says: Jul 23, 2014 7:20 AM

    This is why they’ve been better for a decade. It still irks me as a Redskins fan that Steve Spurier was our head coach over Marvin Lewis (our def Coord) in 02-03

  4. laxer37 says: Jul 23, 2014 7:23 AM

    So he handed the ball off to his daughter and head coach but is still heavily involved and is still there 7 days a week.

    Ok, got it.

  5. garyridgway says: Jul 23, 2014 7:29 AM

    Well its not like you can do any worse then the former “management”.

  6. ctiggs says: Jul 23, 2014 7:32 AM

    Lol someone named “Katie” is help running your organization. #GoNIners #Nobodyhasitbetter #WewouldNeverstandforthis

  7. osubrndn says: Jul 23, 2014 7:38 AM

    I know he gets hated on alot, but his quote there shows the signs of someone that understands how to lead.

  8. eaglesnoles05 says: Jul 23, 2014 7:40 AM

    Whenever it needs to be mentioned, let’s just call that 91 playoff game what it was: The game where we lost Bo.

  9. joetoronto says: Jul 23, 2014 7:40 AM

    Worst owner in all of sports spanning the globe says what?

  10. dcapettini says: Jul 23, 2014 7:43 AM

    You have to give credit where credit is due. Without Marvin Lewis and the Bengals, Texas would be a team that had never won a playoff game. As it is, they have won two.

  11. eaglesnoles05 says: Jul 23, 2014 7:44 AM

    That Bo Jackson injury game and the snowy Marino vs Kelly game are two of the games etching in my memory as a kid. And the crushing by the raiders the next week in the AFCCG w/o Bo. Lost by 50 I think to Buffalo.

  12. titansbro says: Jul 23, 2014 7:57 AM

    That’s a pretty great quote, regardless of your feelings on the man. Who should take the credit for fleecing the Raiders for 2 1st rd picks in the Carson Palmer trade?

  13. timmons94 says: Jul 23, 2014 7:59 AM

    it sure has translated to a lot of playoff wins

  14. troy43mvp says: Jul 23, 2014 8:20 AM

    Two wars have went by since the Bungals last won a playoff game. Kristen Stewart was not born yet and Garth Brooks had yet to have a # 1 song. Nice Resume.

  15. bengalskuta82 says: Jul 23, 2014 8:28 AM

    Say what you guys want but the Bengals have quietly established themselves as one AFCs powerhouse teams and a top 10 team in the league.And Florio say amen to that, “amen”! Thanks
    Since 09 theyve won the AFCNx2, 5 playoff appearances. Yes, they still need to win a playoff. I agree but you cant say they havent been successful.

  16. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Jul 23, 2014 8:32 AM

    Uh, doctor… teams that are 77-163 and have had 30 starting QBs over the last 15 years don’t have a doormat. They ARE the doormat.

  17. winkeroni says: Jul 23, 2014 8:40 AM

    I’m not a Bengals fan but this is good news for Bengals fans. I think the change in control happened after the 2010 season. In 2010 the Bengals went 4-12 and Lewis spent the whole time looking defeated having to play TO and Ochocinco each game. I think the last football decision Mike Brown made was the Carson Palmer trade.

    Something had to have happened after the 2010 season. Lewis didn’t look happy and seemed to have accepted his fate that he would not have a job in 2011. Maybe Brown listened to his daughter but the Bengals have been on the right track since. Brown couldn’t have been making all those decisions and for the most part he’s been quieter lately.

  18. colv says: Jul 23, 2014 8:49 AM

    A couple years ago Marv stated that the team would take elite organizations, Pittsburg, NE, GB NYG and Baltimore as a lead. They are mimicking how their GM does business. Brown was a joke, like Dallas’ Big Jerry and ran the team into the ground. By allowing Marv, who really runs this team they are right up their with Baltimore and Pittsburg.

  19. bengalsucker says: Jul 23, 2014 8:55 AM

    Anyone who believes Marvin and Katie run this team, I have beachfront property in Idaho to sell you. Mike still very much has a powerful say in this team. Of course he wants people to think he has relinquished power. But he hasn’t. However, to the Browns fan saying the Bengals have been your doormat, really?! I must have been watching something else the last 10 years.

  20. uglydingo says: Jul 23, 2014 9:14 AM

    Mike Brown has the reputation of being the most frugal owner in the NFL which he seemed to enjoy. In many situations Mike would take the cheapest option and the players expected it. His management style is the total opposite to Jerry Jones. In handing over a lot of the responsibility, has he relinquished the purse strings?

  21. floratiotime says: Jul 23, 2014 9:23 AM

    Wish I could give myself a bonus. Must be nice.

  22. asimonetti88 says: Jul 23, 2014 9:59 AM

    Well that is great news for Bengals fans

  23. magicmtndan says: Jul 23, 2014 10:46 AM

    Mike Brown frugal? Ha! Mike Brown’s spending makes the word frugal look extravagant. He’s cheaper than cheap.

    Oh, and to the poster above who mentioned “Bengals” and “AFC powerhouse” in the same sentence: go look up “powerhouse” in the dictionary and you won’t find anything resembling the Bengals football team.

  24. 4thandlonger says: Jul 23, 2014 10:52 AM

    Everyone hates on Mike Brown for being cheap and for making himself GM.

    But which of us could honestly say they wouldn’t run the team if they were given NFL ownership tomorrow? I’d look to hire a very good GM to run the show but I’d be in on every decision for sure.

    If it didn’t work out in wins I hope I’d be humble enough to realise I was interfering but at least initially I’m playing GM for sure, way to much fun not to!

    And I hope that I’d be spending enough team money to win but I’m not going broke pumping cash in to the team if it hurt my personal finances.

  25. cornerstone2001 says: Jul 23, 2014 10:54 AM

    How Marvin Lewis still has a job I’ll never know.
    Oh wait….

  26. bengaldom2 says: Jul 23, 2014 11:42 AM

    Those that hate on Mike Brown for being cheap. give it up. Why do you want to spend lots of money on a single player that is not going to take you to the promise land. Look at Dallas. Those that hate on Marvin. He has created an atmosphere that brings the most out of the players. Yes time management is not his strong suite but he manages players well. The playoff losses came because our coordinator could not create a good game plan or call the right plays.

  27. nyking1963 says: Jul 23, 2014 11:56 AM

    Steelers and Ravens fans can continue to call them Bungles and make fun of them, but alst I saw, neither of your teams made the playoffs last year and chances are won’t be making it again unless as a wild card.
    The Bengals are a team on the way up. Your teams are on the way down.

  28. joetoronto says: Jul 23, 2014 12:02 PM

    Powerhouse, LOL!

  29. alwaysuc says: Jul 23, 2014 12:19 PM

    Browns Doormat ? Really ?
    Last 10 years Browns are 51-109, Bengals are 82-78 with five playoff trips.

  30. youpeopleareallthesame says: Jul 23, 2014 1:18 PM

    Well, it explains why the team has been noticeably better lately. They should just make Marvin the GM and hire a real coach

  31. mysterytonite says: Jul 23, 2014 1:27 PM

    The organization has come a long way over the Marvin Lewis tenure. The comfort that Brown has with Lewis speaks volumes. There is alot of trust and respect on both sides. When Marvin does decide to step down as coach, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him in a gm/ president type of role.

    That being said, I really hope this team is able to take the next step. The Bengals should have wiped the floor with the Chargers in the playoff game last year. I couldn’t find any position other than qb where they were more talented than Cincy, it should have been a blowout. San Diego outcoached Lewis and his staff and won the turnover battle and pretty much domiated in the trenches.

  32. sergeant2 says: Jul 23, 2014 1:33 PM

    Except for Brown having the final say on all football decisions, Katie (aka Pumpkin) and Marvin now run the team.

  33. djshnooks says: Jul 23, 2014 2:07 PM

    And people laugh at the Bills?

    At least the Bills have WON a playoff game since 1991, for crying out loud.

  34. flushdownmikebrown says: Jul 23, 2014 2:23 PM

    Breath of Fresh air…. there is a reason this team continues to get better…. this is great

    Marvin is mediocre coach…. amazing at talent finding and being a “GM”

  35. cincyalldaway says: Jul 23, 2014 2:26 PM

    Yes, we laugh at the Bills because, well, they’re the Bills, one tier above or possibly hovering horizontal to the Browns.

  36. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Jul 23, 2014 3:27 PM

    Compared to joetoronto’s Raiders, every NFL team is a powerhouse. Except the Browns and Vikings, of course.

  37. moralorel says: Jul 23, 2014 4:10 PM

    In his position, Marvin Lewis has the best gig in the NFL. Many a coach have vied for such power only to fall flat on their face. Maybe Parcells, in recent years of course, has been more successful but i cant think of another coach/GM that’s been better ( does BB in NE have a GM? )

    for those of you mocking Mike Brown’s frugal-ness or greedy-ness remember this; he hasn’t sold the naming rights to the stadium. Of course Brown’s reputation isn’t without merit, but not like some of us believe.

  38. bonniebengal says: Jul 23, 2014 4:29 PM

    Those of us who actually follow the Bengals saw the power shift happen not long after Marvin signed his last contract. We wondered whether Marvin and Katie had tied Mike up somewhere, as good decisions and good drafts began to happen. The Bengals are just beginning to excel. They have a deep and talented roster, and good things are starting to happen.

    That being said, that brilliant Carson Palmer trade was all Mike Brown, and it set us up very well for the future. Hello Gio Bernard. He was one of the two picks we got for that trade. Kirkpatrick was the other one, and while he’s not the star Bernard is, he is a decent CB.

  39. GO FOR TWO SPORTS says: Jul 24, 2014 10:01 AM

    Trust me he is still involved. Marvin Lewis is the luckiest coach of all time. This guy has been the coach forever and STILL has not won a playoff game!
    I got to believe this is his last year, I don’t think The Bengals should of ever let Carson Palmer walk.. They were on the verge of something then they got Palmer all mad and Hue Jackson left who was THE REAL coach..
    Bengals will never win a superbowl with a red headed QB… Sorry just the truth

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